Caregiver sacrifices



To the Editor:

I recently held a “caregiver conversation” in Wells, and I’m hoping that others in Maine may wish to do the same. More than a caregiver support group (although we did touch on some of our shared experiences), these conversations help to raise awareness about the needs of caregivers and start to examine the supports and services caregivers need in their own communities.

There are currently 178,000 family caregivers in the state of Maine who take care of a loved one every day. These unsung heroes make daily sacrifices as they juggle multiple roles and responsibilities. Many of the caregivers we hear from report feeling overwhelmed. We want to work with family caregivers across Maine to ensure that the supports needed to care both for their loved ones and for themselves are in place.

I worked with AARP Maine to organize my small event of about a dozen people. I hope others will send a note to [email protected] to organize a caregiver conversation of their own. Together, we hope to bring voice to the challenges of family caregivers and start to draft a plan to address them effectively.

AARP Maine also has a new resource available for family caregivers called a “Caregiver Resource Guide.” No matter where you are in the continuum of caregiving – starting to plan, helping to coordinate a big move or taking care of a family member in your home – having resources at your fingertips will make the process easier. You can order this free guide at [email protected].

Amy Madge

AARP Maine Volunteer

Wells

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